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Saturday, December 31, 2011

13.1 Miles: Training Week 1

Last Saturday I announced to the online world that I will be running my first ever half-marathon on March 4th. 

The Gasparilla Distance Classic is in Tampa and is exactly:
*10 Weeks Away!* (Well...9 now.)

Since this is my first half, I wanted to record and share every step of the way with you to show that running a half-marathon isn't impossible.  All you need to train and run is a goal, discipline and lots of blood sweat and tears.

Before getting to Week 1, I want to stress the importance of pre-training. This basically means going on leisure runs without recording my time or distance, with the goal of continuously running for 30 minutes. Doing this will build up your stamina and get you ready for serious training.

When looking for a training program to follow, I simply googled "half-marathon training for beginners" and found a few sites.  The one I ended up following happens to be the same program my friend Erin is on, which is perfect because she is the one who inspired me to sign up for the race!

There's different versions of days, distances per day, and length of weeks of programs to choose from, but we both settled on the 10 Week Program from


Week 1 started on Monday for me and it felt great.  Here's a brief breakdown of each day to get you on my page.  All of my stats are tracked on my profile on

Day 1
Monday, Dec. 26th, 2011

Scott ran with me on my first official training day, which was also the day after Christmas.  Although it felt good to run, I was struggling from all of the Christmas cookies and treats I'd consumed!  I had to stop to walk twice (stomach cramps), but luckily Scott started our pace off faster than I like to go, which saved my time.

Miles: 3
Time: 24:18
Speed: 7.4mi/h
Pace: 8:07min/mi

 Post-Run Meal:

After all the crap sugary treats I ate for Christmas, I was craving protein.  Day 1's meal featured 3 egg whites scrambled with tomatoes, green peppers and black olives, served with a Morning Star Farms Hot'n Spiciy Veggie Sausage Patty, complete with a side of salsa and 8 oz. of Trop 50 Pomegranate Blueberry Juice.

Day 2
Wednesday, Dec. 28th, 2011

I woke up bright and early Tuesday, since this is my favorite time to run outside.  Being out there while the sun rises is such a motivation for me to run 20 times faster.

Miles: 3
Time: 25:11
Speed: 7.1mi/h
Pace: 8:25min/mi

 Post-Run Meal:

I kept my meal on the lighter side, since I was planning to meet my friend Katie for breakfast and a Doggie Park Date.  After my run, I got enough fuel from 8 oz. of Odwalla Superfood Smoothie and the rest of my banana I started before my run.

Day 3
Thursday, December 29th, 2011

I met my mom for a run at Lake Eola.  She is also training with me, in hopes of signing up for the half-marathon herself.  She's doing a great job keeping up and doesn't let the 30 years she has on me slow her down.  I slowed Day 3 down a little here and there to run right by her side.

Miles: 3
Time: 28:10
Speed: 6.4mi/h
Pace: 9:26min/mi

 Post-Run Meal:

Since Panera Bread was right across the street, we walked over to enjoy breakfast sandwiches.  I got the Breakfast Power Sandwich with Ham, Cheese and Egg Whites on whole grain with a Medium Hazelnut Coffee.

Day 4
Saturday, December 31, 2011

Today we are getting ready to bring in 2012 and it looks GORGEOUS outside.

It was gorgeous...but it was also HOT!  We didn't go running at the best time of the day (meaning I had to stop once and almost fainted), but we got through it.  Good for us!

Miles: 4
Time: 33:21
Speed: 7.2mi/h
Pace: 8:21min/mi

 Post-Run Meal:

Today I was craving fruit, so I enjoyed a strawberry, banana and Stonyfiend Organic low-fat yogurt parfait topped with Bear Naked Fit Granola, paired with a DrinkChia! and a handful of raw almonds.

Week 1 of of Half-Marathon Training: Check.

What I've learned this week:
  • Equipping yourself with the right running shoes makes a world of difference for running long distances, and your body.
  • The best time for me to go running is first thing in the morning, with a little something in my belly.
  • The worst time for me to go running is anywhere from 11am-3pm.  It's HOT here in Florida, and it's hard to run with sun in your eyes.
  • It's important to re-hydrate and fuel up after your run as soon as possible.  This week I've enjoyed DrinkChia! and SoBe Lifewater for instant hydration.
  • I really, really want a GPS/training watch for my runs!  Flipping back and forth from my playlist and iMapMyRun app can only get me so far for so long...
Goals for Training Week 2:

Do 3 miles in 23 minutes
Do 4 miles in 31 minutes.

Speaking of playlists, I'll be posting a playlist a week of what I used to get me through training.  Training Week 1 Playlist is coming your way, very shortly! :)

Happy Saturday!

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